For Those About to Tag

For Those About to Tag

Jan H. Kietzmann (Simon Fraser University, Canada)
Copyright: © 2009 |Pages: 14
DOI: 10.4018/978-1-60566-366-1.ch001
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The recent evolution of mobile auto-identification technologies invites firms to connect to mobile work in altogether new ways. By strategically embedding “smart” devices, organizations involve individual subjects and real objects in their corporate information flows, and execute more and more business processes through such technologies as mobile Radio-Frequency Identification (RFID). The imminent path from mobility to pervasiveness focuses entirely on improving organizational performance measures and metrics of success. Work itself, and the dramatic changes these technologies introduce to the organization and to the role of the mobile worker are by and large ignored. The aim of this chapter is to unveil the key changes and challenges that emerge when mobile landscapes are “tagged”, and when mobile workers and mobile auto-identification technologies work side-by-side. The motivation for this chapter is to encourage thoughts that appreciate auto-identification technologies and their socio-technical impact on specific mobile work practices and on the nature of mobile work in general.
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Mobile work is everywhere; and despite claims by vendors and organizational consultants mobility is neither new nor particularly novel. On the contrary, many traditional occupations have always been highly mobile, including the work of taxi-drivers, policemen, traveling merchants, entertainers and trades people, to name a few. Their degree of mobility may differ, but what mobile workers have in common is a fluid arrangement of workspaces, times and contexts. Despite a long tradition of mobile work arrangements, for example Hackney carriage drivers started in London, UK in 1622, the phenomenon of mobility has not received much attention by organizational scholars over time.

The advancement of modern mobile technologies from the heavy, transmission-weak and battery-hungry, expensive mobile phones of the 1980s to the omnipresent devices of today have raised mobility to the fore of both industry and academia. Interaction among mobile workers, but also with location-dependent colleagues, superiors and clients is carried out via technologies that allow subject-object-subject communication, with the device as a tool that facilitates the exchange of voice, video or data.

Surprisingly, until recently, the success of the mobile phone has not brought many radical innovations forward. Improvements of mobile technologies are seen primarily as incremental, with no new breakthroughs or killer-applications in sight. However, emerging mobile auto-identification technologies invite firms to connect in various ways to their mobile landscape. By strategically embedding technologies with a very small footprint, events involving individual subjects and real objects can be included within organizational information flows. Mobile radio-frequency identification (mobile RFID), for instance, allows firms to place transponders (i.e. tags) and transceivers (i.e. readers) throughout the terrain they cover to initiate object-to-object communication and drive mobile business processes.

In light of these developments, industry and academia have predominantly examined the increasing embeddedness of such context-aware technologies in terms of their impact on the information content of work. The imperceptible object-object interaction enabled by auto-identification technologies is hailed as a dramatic improvement for logistics and supply-chain management. However, along this path from mobility to pervasiveness, work itself, and the dramatic changes these technologies introduce to the organization and to the role of the mobile worker have so far been neglected. The introduction of mobile RFID is discussed here as an example of many auto-identification technologies that mark the move from a mobile landscape, in which mobile workers communicate at will with others as they navigate their terrain, to a pervasive ecosystems that exists as an interactive system between its living, human participants, the objects that shape their work and the environment in which they exist.

The motivation of this chapter is to discuss the fundamental difference of mobility and pervasiveness, with a focus on the user-technology relationship which, in today’s attempts to optimize organizational effectiveness and efficiency through embedded technologies, has been entirely overlooked.

The aim of this chapter is to unveil the key changes and challenges that emerge when mobile landscapes are “tagged”, and to prepare the reader for the impact that tagging technologies can have on mobile work environments. This chapter should be useful for developers of mobile technology, but also for application developers. Most importantly, this chapter is aimed at “those about to tag” – at practitioners who contemplate the adoption of auto-identification technologies to improve their organizational information flows.

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Editorial Advisory Board
Table of Contents
Milena Head, Eldon Y. Li
Milena Head, Eldon Y. Li
Chapter 1
Jan H. Kietzmann
The recent evolution of mobile auto-identification technologies invites firms to connect to mobile work in altogether new ways. By strategically... Sample PDF
For Those About to Tag
Chapter 2
Adrian Lawrence, Jane Williams
As commercial interest in LBS increases, legal and regulatory bodies are becoming increasingly interested in the extent to which use of LBS may... Sample PDF
Privacy and Location-Based Mobile Services: Finding a Balance
Chapter 3
Dietmar G. Wiedemann, Wolfgang Palka, Key Pousttchi
A sizeable body of research on mobile payment evolved in recent years. Researchers analyzed success factors and acceptance criteria as well as... Sample PDF
Business Models for Mobile Payment Service Provision and Enabling
Chapter 4
Mikko Pynnonen, Jukka Hallikas, Petri Savolainen, Karri Mikkonen
In a digital home a so-called multi-play system integrates networked entertainment and communications systems. Using a mobile phone, all those... Sample PDF
Ubiquitous Communication: where is the Value Created in the Multi-Play Value Network?
Chapter 5
Adam Vrechopoulos, Michail Batikas
Mobile government transform many of the traditional governance practices. The citizens’ adoption of M-Government services (e.g. voting, tax... Sample PDF
Predicting the Adoption of Mobile Government Services
Chapter 6
Katarzyna Wac, Richard Bults, Bert-Jan van Beijnum, Hong Chen, Dimitri Konstantas
Mobile service providers (MoSPs) emerge, driven by the ubiquitous availability of mobile devices and wireless communication infrastructures. MoSPs’... Sample PDF
Towards Mobile Web 2.0-Based Business Methods: Collaborative QoS-Information Sharing for Mobile Service Users
Chapter 7
Giangluigi Me, Daniele Pirro, Roberto Sarrecchia
Currently the most popular attacks to the E-Banking Web applications target the authentication systems relying on the single-side client... Sample PDF
Strong Authentication for Financial Services: PTDs as a Compromise Between Security and Usability
Chapter 8
Antonio Ruiz-Martinez, Daniel Sanchez-Martinez, Maria Martinez-Montesinos, Antonio Gomez-Skarmeta
Non-repudiation is an important issue in mobile business and mobile commerce in order to provide the necessary evidences to prove whether some party... Sample PDF
Mobile Signature Solutions for Guaranteeing Non-Repudiation in Mobile Business and Mobile Commerce
Chapter 9
Soe-Tsyr Yuan, Fang-Yu Chen
Peer-to-Peer applications harness sharing between free resources (storage, contents, services, human presence, etc.). Most existing wireless P2P... Sample PDF
UbiSrvInt: A Context-Aware Fault-Tolerance Approach for WP2P Service Provision
Chapter 10
Dianne Cyr, Milena Head, Alex Ivanov
Anytime anywhere services offered through mobile commerce hold great potential to serve customers in wireless environments. However, there is... Sample PDF
Perceptions of Mobile Device Website Design: Culture, Gender and Age Comparisons
Chapter 11
Douglass J. Scott, Constantinos K. Coursaris, Yuuki Kato, Shogo Kato
This study compared the exchange of emotional content in PC and mobile e-mail in business-related discussions. Forty American business people were... Sample PDF
The Exchange of Emotional Content in Business Communications: A Comparison of PC and Mobile E-Mail Users
Chapter 12
Carla Ruiz-Mafe, Silvia Sanz-Blas, Adrian Broz-Lofiego, Daniel Marchuet
The chapter aims to present an in-depth study of the factors influencing Mobile Internet adoption. The authors analyse the influence of Internet use... Sample PDF
Mobile Internet Adoption by Spanish Consumers
Chapter 13
Mahil Carr
This chapter introduces concepts, frameworks and possible models for introducing mobile payments in India. The introductory section defines mobile... Sample PDF
Framework for Mobile Payment Systems in India
Chapter 14
E.S. Samundeeswari, F. Mary Magdalene Jane
Over the years computer systems have evolved from centralized monolithic computing devices supporting static applications, into client-server... Sample PDF
Mobile Code and Security Issues
Chapter 15
Tommi Pelkonen
This chapter describes the Finnish mobile telecommunications industry trends and prospects. In addition, it presents two theoretical frameworks... Sample PDF
Finland: Internationalization as the key to Growth and M-Commerce Success
Chapter 16
Dickson K.W. Chiu, S.C. Cheun, Ho-Fung Leung
In a service-oriented enterprise, the professional workforce such as salespersons and support staff tends to be mobile with the recent advances in... Sample PDF
Mobile Workforce Management in a Service-Oriented Enterprise: Capturing Concepts and Requirements in a Multi-Agent Infrastructure
Chapter 17
Dawn-Marie Turner, Sunil Hazari
Wireless technology has broad implications for the healthcare environment. Despite its promise, this new technology has raised questions about... Sample PDF
Bringing Secure Wireless Technology to the Bedside: A Case Study of Two Canadian Healthcare Organizations
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